shipping Holiday Shipping Details & Extended Holiday Returns
cover
Craig R.

Craig R.

Joined on 05/09/04

0
0

Product Reviews
product reviews
  • 32
Most Favorable Review

Qualifies for it's job title

TRIPP LITE TRAVELCUBE Wall Mount 1 Outlets 1080 joule Direct Plug-in Surge Protector
TRIPP LITE TRAVELCUBE Wall Mount 1 Outlets 1080 joule Direct Plug-in Surge Protector

Pros: Performs both surge and noise supression. This is critical because many electrical problems are due to noise and not just surges. A surge ruins things but noise causes erratic problems. I bought 5 of them for surpressing noise and spikes at their source as well as frontline protectors for my UPS's. I opened one up to verify that it had all the right parts in the right quantities. *don't do this unless you are qualified* Earned the 5th star back for being easy to re-assemble and eventually proving it had all of its qualifications.

Cons: Newegg says it has noise protection, it's manufacturer's site says it has noise protection. Nowhere in, on, or around the package does it say it has noise protection. That is why I had to open one up to verify that it does, in fact, have noise supression to some extent. The passive type noise supression could be a bit better but the part value I would have put in there would have forced the price up and most people wouldn't understand the benefit for the aditional cost. Anyway, take the "up to 20DB" with a grain of salt if you have this connected inline with a quality UPS that will also have some filtration onboard. Even if you don't, you should still have one of these connected to your computer and anything else that is expensive and has a circuit board or a heavy coil (like the fridge, washer, microwave, etc). The only other con here doesn't effect me. People who still have a phone modem probably have a second line to run it on. This device prottects only the first, not the scnd

Overall Review: I'll give you the details here so you don't have to open one and potentially ruin something: -Surge protection is via standard MOV's on all 3 power lines and 2 wires (your first phone line not your second) of the phone circuit -MOV disconnect (because they short out after they're done protecting) is done by both a cheep but workable fused link and a thermal fuse rated for 115c for the power lines and glass tube type fuses for the phone line. -The dual fuse types on the power lines is the best way of meeting the latest revision of UL1449 in my opinion and although the implementation was rather cheap it was not shody for a disposable device -The noise supression is performed by a single .01uF cap across the hot and neutral wires. I'd prefer .22uF or better but this should dampen out most RFI and the computer glitches it would cause. The cap is of high quality and is rated at 400VAC. -You should have something cheap and disposable like this as a first defense even if you have a UPS.

Most Critical Review

Obsolete

Cisco Small Business RVS4000 Gigabit Security Router with VPN 1 x RJ45 WAN Ports 4 x 10/100/1000Mbps LAN Ports
Cisco Small Business RVS4000 Gigabit Security Router with VPN 1 x RJ45 WAN Ports 4 x 10/100/1000Mbps LAN Ports

Pros: It has Intrusion Protection and stately packet inspection. If these features were on all network destinations then there would simply be no point in most internet attacks. I highly regard this feature.

Cons: It's very old and can't keep up with my internet connection of 25Mb. I moved the entire local network to a separate switch and only use this for setting up static IPs and as an internet gateway/filter but its decrepit processor can't keep up. The internal memory is too small and so when there is the rare IPS update it has to remove signatures to put new ones in, re-opening holes. Requires subscription fees to use its built in security features which is a scammy, scam, scam.

Overall Review: I bought mine over 5 years ago when it was still a Linksys product. Since Cisco took it over I've found the updates are now very hard to get and apparently they now charge for the updates that open the old holes to patch new ones. One big thing that is not stated in the features list is that most of the really good management stuff (like blocking web sites) is a subscription based service that is built into the unit but requires you to pay a fee to use it. I loved this unit a long time ago but lately it is becoming the biggest bottleneck on my network and I'm fed up with its obsolete and protection racquet based fee for security business model.

11/30/2011

Bad monitor at a bad price

HP Compaq SmartBuy LA2405x Brushed Aluminum and Black 24" 5ms height, pivot & swivel adjustable Widescreen LED Monitor 250 cd/m2 DC 3,000,000:1 (1000:1)
HP Compaq SmartBuy LA2405x Brushed Aluminum and Black 24" 5ms height, pivot & swivel adjustable Widescreen LED Monitor 250 cd/m2 DC 3,000,000:1 (1000:1)

Pros: Not many, beyond that of any simple and cheap monitor. Will likely tan your face while it burns out your retinas.

Cons: Causes all sorts of eyestrain and headaches, poor color definition and uniformity, not enough input options, way to expensive for this low quality trash.

Overall Review: I had a technical and in-depth review but evidently my session timed out before I posted it and it was lost. Sorry. The bottom line is that even though this has the rare vertical resolution of a good non-widescreen monitor (which is why I bought it), its design and quality are horrible and it's not worth half the price. Wait for this one to go on clearance because that's where it's headed. You can then pick them up at realistic prices and use them to keep your kids from using the computer too much or getting employees to quit without hassle.

Possible heirloom piece

NETGEAR ProSAFE 16-Port Gigabit Ethernet Switch (GS116NA)
NETGEAR ProSAFE 16-Port Gigabit Ethernet Switch (GS116NA)

Pros: The main unit apparently runs forever. It's made of steel so it can dissipate heat without a fan as well as being unquestionably physically sound. There are no settings, adjustments, drivers, firmware, or things to get hacked or infected. The ports and lights are on the front with the power cord in the back because that's what works for wiring cabinets. It's not meant for show and tell, but for quick and easy hookup and diagnostics, while keeping that all-important power cable out of 'oops' reach. Gigabit will likely remain viable for a very long time yet. Sixteen ports is plenty for my past, present, and future 'networked everything' geek home.

Cons: The power supply failed after 5 years of 24/7/365 use, including on uninterrupted backup power through power outages. The first 4 years was in a location with low quality power, and the last 1 year is in a place with higher than usual voltage (125V). It is never turned off. Being a brand and model that has lasted so long, it was not hard to find an aftermarket replacement power supply, but the experience of network paralysis was so traumatic that I suggest a backup plan be ready in case it happens to you. It also does not have all the fancy management software that a company would usually need to hire an employee to maintain. That's sort of a take it or leave it feature unless you want to trunk your ports for a poor-mans multi-gig connection, but that would put many of the related parts and software into another price ballpark anyway. This device is simply plug in and go until the lights don't light up anymore. Until the power supply quits, it will never need a reboot.

Overall Review: Having 16 ports will generally suffice for an exceptionally smart home, and if 'hotspots' are culminated onto sub-switches before making a run to this main switch, there's not really enough wired network objects in the near future to fill it up. It has plenty of ports, speed, and capability to merge multiple office sections onto one line before several of those lines are sent to a more expensive switch to trunk them onto a multi-gig or optical line. That saves a lot of money in both wiring and hardware. I prefer the 'store and forward' technique that this uses, as some modern devices, like security cameras, are commonly 10-100Mbs and don't yet use jumbo frames. The method this switch uses will buffer an entire packet from a device and then send it to the destination at that new speed. This keeps the small/slow camera feed packets from slowing down my jumbo framed, gigabit packets between more capable devices.

Not worth the price

GIGABYTE Super Overclock Series GeForce GTX 570 (Fermi) 1280MB GDDR5 PCI Express 2.0 x16 SLI Support Video Card GV-N570SO-13I
GIGABYTE Super Overclock Series GeForce GTX 570 (Fermi) 1280MB GDDR5 PCI Express 2.0 x16 SLI Support Video Card GV-N570SO-13I

Pros: BOINC measures it at twice the GFLOPS as my older GTX260.

Cons: The fans, which are attached to a heat source (<-emphasis), are made of low melting point plastic. One of the three fans on my card simply melted off and the one next to it is going mushy. Besides this error that demonstrates an incompetent manufacturer, this card doesn't even perform that well in the games that I play and I don't even play the 'latest and greatest'.

Overall Review: Video cards are one of the most expensive parts in a computer and I expect them to run until the technology is obsolete. This manufacturer chose the wrong plastic for a critical part, which I think is a pretty basic engineering consideration, and I won't buy from them in the foreseeable future. I would like to continue using what's left of this card, but apparently they did such a bad job of standardizing it that I can't even find an application that is capable of communicating with it to manually spin the remaining fans faster to compensate for the missing one. It runs at about 207F and probably won't last the rest of the week.

RAM upgrade is better/cheaper

Mushkin Enhanced Chronos Deluxe 2.5" 240GB SATA III MLC Internal Solid State Drive (SSD) MKNSSDCR240GB-DX
Mushkin Enhanced Chronos Deluxe 2.5" 240GB SATA III MLC Internal Solid State Drive (SSD) MKNSSDCR240GB-DX

Pros: It's pretty quick for a hard drive. Some *parts* of programs load faster. Since it crashes the system if it powers down it is always *spun up* so to speak and ready to go. Was pretty much the fastest and biggest SSD I could get in this price range... and has dropped about a hundred since then. Would be ideal for someone with a stripped down operating system with minimal services and load-on-boot programs for the purpose of boasting fast boot times... though you could do that with a much smaller drive. Low power consumption for my overtaxed circuit breaker and UPS to cope with.

Cons: Some programs error out on bootup because requisite services (like network connectivity) are not ready by the time programs are done loading and need them. This means that even though I have faster theoretical boot times I have to do additional work and even restarts to get everything running, resulting in slower real-world boot times and additional work. Had to wait for the 3.3.something firmware before it stopped crashing my computer 1-5 times per day. Some people report that even this did not fix their crashes. Requires in-depth BIOS, operating system, and firmware tweaks to make it work. Good luck if you don't have a premium motherboard with BIOS tweaking options. Since I have abundant ram, most of my data is cached anyway so program performance was largely unaffected. A standard hard drive and a large quantity of ram is much faster (and cheaper) since DDR3 trumps SATAIII and windows will cache everything into RAM... and you will have more drive space.

Overall Review: Though it was a rather expensive lesson, I learned that if you have enough ram (I have 12GB) it really doesn't matter in most situations how fast your hard drive is because windows will cache as much relevant data as will fit in your ram to improve performance. All of the slowdowns and waiting to load/start/game transitions/web page reloads were all caused by other factors such as server synchronizations/update checking, pre-measured wait times for network or hardware response, and I don't know why local game content still takes as long to load/transition but it does. With 16GB of ram costing 1/4-1/3 as much as this you would be much better served by a big ram upgrade. I run 4 web browsers across my 4 screens and anywhere from 20-40 tabs. I have music streams and VoIP running 24/7 and several monitoring apps running always. I play video games regularly on top of this base system load and swap file is turned off. The SSD was nothing but headaches when RAM had my speed maxed all along.